WCOOP 2014: 360flip019 runs the table to win Event #12 ($215 NLH, Heads-Up)

The midweek schedule for the 2014 World Championship of Online Poker presented players with one of the more popular variations of the game. Heads-up No Limit Hold'em with big money up top for the player who could win 11 straight matches, assuming no bye in the first round.

The tournament drew 1,830 players to the $215 buy-in event and the nature of the game meant no late registration was available. The $250,000 guarantee was easily surpassed as they built the prize pool to $366,000 with nearly $50,000 set aside for the WCOOP champion. Players who won their first three matches were guaranteed money and the tournament took a break when just 64 remained.

Their break lasted until Thursday when they restarted to determine the next WCOOP victor. There was a former champion of this event in the mix late, Stunnaf00 won the Heads-Up WCOOP title in 2012 and was able to survive the opening rounds to make it to Day 2. His shot for a second title ended quickly when he was the first eliminated after the restart. Chris "Moorman1" Moorman and Ana Marquez were two others dropping out in the round of 64.

Team PokerStars Naoya "nkeyno" Kihara matched Stunnaf00's feat as the first out in the next round. Before the table could load for observation, Kihara was already gone in 32nd. Former Sunday Million champion Ravi "govshark2" Raghavan was also among those falling short in the round of 32.

Quarterfinal Round


360flip019 vs kinglune
lbtrading vs teunuss
10Badboy10 vs rbhatia3
23noraB vs drnyul

360flip019 was the first player to move onto the semis after taking a big early lead against kinglune. He picked up a big pot with top-top when kinglune fired away on every street with King-high. Their final hand saw 360flip019 limp from the button with A♠9♦ then call kinglune's shove with Q♥J♦.

The board ran out all low 8♦3♥2♠3♦ before spiking the unneeded river A♣. kinglune has two Sunday Million final tables to his credit, 2nd and 4th place finishes, but dropped out short of a WCOOP championship.

lbtrading was the next to finish up his match after a nice comeback. He was down 2-to-1 early in his match with teunuss but doubled into the lead when his flopped full house with 3♥3♠ crushed trip Sixes. The hand gave him a small lead in the match but lbtrading never gave it up.

The match was complete when teunuss open-shoved with K♠6♥ with a short stack and was unable to catch up to lbtrading's K♥J♥. teunuss was officialy gone in 7th place for $8,813.

23noraB joined 360flip019 and lbtrading in the next round after taking charge early with a 3,000 chip pot with 7♥7♣ and he kept control throughout. drnyul continued to fight and they battled for nearly 90 hands without ever finding the necessary double. The third match ended when 23noraB called a shove with J♣J♥ against T♦9♦. Another drama free board and drnyul was the next gone while 23noraB moved on.

The match between 10Badboy10 and rbhatia3 looked set to be a marathon affair as they closed on a hour of play and the two were in a virtual dead heat. rbhatia3 was slightly ahead with 5,069 versus 4,931 when they played a monster hand to the river.

rbhatia3 three-bet preflop and 10Badboy10 called to see the 8♣3♣2♠ flop. rbhatia3 bet another 455 to get another call before the J♠ turn when they both checked. Things came off the rails after the 8♥ river when rbhatia3 put in a third bet for all his chips. 10Badboy10 thought for a long time before calling with trip Eights 8♠6♦ but was far behind rbhatia3's out kicking A♦8♦.

10Badboy10 was the last out in the round for $8,183 while the semi-final match ups were set.

Semifinal Round



360flip019 vs lbtrading
23noraB vs rbhatia3

rbhatia3 was the first player to book a spot at the final table in a back-and-forth match which was in flux until late. rbhatia3 took command when he chopped 23noraB in half when his J♦T♠ rivered a straight after he fired on every street.

Only a few hands later and 23noraB open-shoved with A♠2♣ and rbhatia3 called with 9♣9♦. 23noraB added a gutshot draw to his over cards on the 6♦5♣4♣ flop before missing the T♣ turn and K♦ river. The Austrian player has nearly $3 million career earnings on PokerStars without a major title, and he just missed out here.

The match between 360flip019 and lbtrading took much longer to decide even though lbtrading was playing behind most of the time. 360flip019 took a nice early lead before they settled in for the hour-long grind. lbtrading was on the wrong side of most big pots before putting himself very short making a play with Ace-high against a turned straight.

That hand put him down to just 566 against 9,434 leaving him with few options other then preflop shoves. lbtrading managed to last another 10 hands, including one lucky chop, before his time ran out. He shoved with 8♣7♥ and was called by J♠9♣, two live cards for a double. 360flip019 took command on the A♦9♠4♦ flop and locked it up with the 9♦ turn.

Final Round


360flip019 vs rbhatia3

Unlike most heads-up tournaments, this final match didn't immediately on an unscheduled break to discuss an even chop of the remaining money. They both played it out for 20 minutes before giving it a chat. They were still very close in chips but 360flip019 asked for significantly more in negotiations, a number which earned a laugh from rbhatia3 before they resumed action without a deal.

Their match almost ended earlier than anticipated when 360flip019 called rbhatia3's four-bet shove. rbhatia3 was ahead but racing for the double with 4♦4♠ against A♣T♣. The board ran out J♠9♦6♦J♦K♥ to put rbhatia3 in the lead.

rbhatia3's lead didn't last long as 360flip019 was holding a bluff catcher with top pair K♣J♠ against unimproved J♥4♥. It was more of the back-and-forth between them with the major hands going 360flip019's way. They went another 35 hands before rbhatia3 took another shot to get back in the game.

rbhatia3 limped from the button with K♥T♥ then called when 360flip019 put him all-in with A♠9♠. rbhatia3 needed help with his live suited cards and picked up a flush draw on the 7♥5♥5♠ flop. 360flip019 paired the A♣ turn leaving rbhatia3 looking for the hearts.

He blanked the 6♣ river to miss out on the title, ending in the runner-up position for $29,386. 360flip09 had a previous success with a 3rd place finish during the 2013 SCOOP series but can now add WCOOP champion to his list of accomplishments plus the $46,185 which go along with the title.

WCOOP 2014: Event #12 $215 NL Hold'em (Heads-Up)
Entrants: 1,830
Prize pool: $366,000
Places paid: 256

1. 360flip019 (Canada) $46,185.54
2. rbhatia3 (India) $29,386.14
3. lbtrading (United Kingdom) $14,698.56
4. 23noraB (Austria) $14,698.56
5. 10Badboy10 (Russia) $8,183.76
6. drnyul (Hungary) $8,183.76
7. teunuss (Netherlands) $8,183.76
8. kinglune (Hong Kong) $8,183.76

Al Rash
@PokerStars in WCOOP